ATP Queens & WTA Birmingham Round Up

By Ros Satar & Phil James

ATP 250 Aegon Championships, London

There were mixed fortunes for the British men in the first round at the ATP250 Aegon Championships, at Queen’s Club, London.

GB v Russia Davis Cup heroes Dan Evans and James Ward were in action today, as was Jamie Baker, who had come through the qualifying rounds.

Dan Evans put in a sharp straight sets performance against Guido Pella, ranked 75.

Evans reached the quarter-finals at the Aegon Trophy in Nottingham last week, so with some grass play under his belt, he was able to take control against a player ranked over 200 places above him, but predominantly a clay specialist.

Evans suffered a tumble in the slightly heavy conditions today, but wound up with a win in a little under an hour today, 6-3, 6-1.

There was no joy for James Ward, who squandered two chances to serve for the match, eventually losing to Ivan Dodig, 67(8), 76(2), 76(2)

The first set saw both players swapping breaks but with neither able to capitalise, eventually getting down to a tense tie-breaker won by Ward.

The second set saw the British no. 2 stretch to a break lead but could not serve it out at 5-3, giving Dodig a chance to get back into the match, as he romped through the tie-break.

Again it was a tight deciding set, with Ward getting an early break, and serving for the set at 5-4, and again opening the door for the Croatian to come back, and once again Ward was left behind in the tie-break.

Jamie Baker, who had won a place in the main draw through the qualifying rounds, lost to ninth seed  Benoit Paire 7-5, 6-3.


Aegon Classic, WTA International, Birmingham

The two British women in action both fell in the first round in Birmingham today.

Wildcard Melanie South fell to 16th seed Magdalena Rybarikova 6-4, 6-2.

Anne Keothavong lost to USA’s Alison Riske, also in straight sets – 7-5, 6-2.

14th seed Heather Watson opens her grass court campaign tomorrow against Melinda Czink and wildcards Tara Moore and Johanna Konta get underway too.

Laura Robson starts with doubles, partnered with Lisa Raymond.

Robson had to pull out of doubles with Raymond after falling in the first round at the French Open (to Caroline Wozniacki), with back pain.